Sometimes you meet people who can’t help but live life honestly, with complete abandon to what comes their way, coupled with a unique ability to bring joy to others by the way they live their life, and you can’t help but start to feel connected to them in a profound way…
David and Carol Loveland are with me in Guatemala this week, and I am still feeling the weight of their story, months after hearing it.
Their story begins way before Hope of Life, before World Help, before there was ever a thought of a Special Needs Center for Guatemalan children. It started decades ago when they welcomed their daughter Kelly into the world.
I’ve heard them talk about Kelly a number of times now, about her life, her two children, her battle with breast cancer, and her untimely death at 38. Despite battling and subsequently losing the fight against cancer and leaving behind a family shaken to their core, Kelly’s legacy is still thriving.
When one loses a daughter, no matter the age- I imagine the devastation is nearly unbearable and the questions are even more muddling to ones soul. David Loveland lost a little faith when he lost his little girl… he lost a little understanding in God’s plans, and he lost a little acceptance of the way things were.
Breath leaves the lung. Enter ache.
Thankfully, a Savior hell-bent on restoration and grace found a way through the muddle of tragedy- and placed David in front of something that ended up being so much bigger than himself. Determined to restore his lost faith in life, God, and humanity- he decided to go beyond normal coping, and he started raising funds to open a Special Needs Center at Hope of Life, in honor of Kelly.
After a long, laborous, and emotional journey… here we are, standing in front of a completed building- ready to treat all sorts of special needs issues. Dedicating a space that is here and ready because of one person’s tragic end and the the despair that caused in a parents heart. It’s here because of the muddle…
And it reminds me… something always fills the empty places, and sometimes these afflictions that we waver through are just the seeds of God’s glory, our obedience slight glimpses of His mercy and all of that leaves us in mystery.
Sometimes… we just need to consume the mystery and build again.
Like David and Carol did.